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Case study: Starcart and Enfuce transform online shopping experience, enable purchases from different shops with a single payment

6 minute read

  • E-commerce aggregator Starcart is transforming the online shopping experience in Finland, allowing consumers to find the best deals across the market—and pay for products from different retailers in a single easy transaction.
  • To create a seamless payments experience, Starcart used Enfuce’s turnkey Card as a Service (CaaS) platform to launch an embedded virtual card payments solution that was the first of its kind. 
  • Just nine months after launch, Starcart had amassed tens of thousands of customers in their initial market, and achieved up to 30% growth in monthly sales volume.


Creating a great customer experience is challenging for any type of digital business. It’s a particularly pressing problem for online shopping, given its seemingly endless choice of shops and items. 

Faced with an exhausting range of choices, consumers have to spend an inordinate amount of time and effort searching for products, comparing prices and making payments across many different stores. Even then, they’re liable to miss smaller retailers who might have better products and prices, simply because it’s easier to go to better-known brands.

Finnish start-up Starcart has changed all that. Using automated software bots, it scours the market for the cheapest products with the fastest shipping times, bringing together more than 15 million items into a single website. Then it does the shopping—making multiple purchases from multiple stores in seconds, with the consumer just having to make a single payment. It’s something that’s never been done before, let alone at scale.

Challenge: Making real-time payments to different merchants in a single customer transaction

Starcart’s unique business model hinged not only on finding the best deals, but also on offering a quick, easy and secure way to pay. That functionality was essential—without it, Starcart would simply be another price comparison service, with customers having to go to different websites to buy their products.

Unless Starcart could find a seamless payments solution, its mission to take the hassle out of online shopping would not be achievable. Neither would its ability to generate more customers and more sales for online retailers. 

But Starcart faced a daunting task. A single customer transaction could easily involve five different sellers—all of whom would have to be paid simultaneously. This functionality would also have to be scaled up. The payments technology required to build what Starcart needed would be significant. And navigating the intricacies of PSD2 would also present substantial challenges on the legal front. 

Solution: Single-use virtual cards issued to Starcart, used to pay multiple merchants on behalf of the customer

To find what it needed, Starcart leveraged Enfuce’s turnkey Card as a Service (CaaS) platform, which enables companies to launch payment card programmes and embedded payments solutions. Working very closely with Starcart and with Visa, Enfuce developed an embedded virtual card payments solution that was fast, secure and compliant, and customised to Starcart’s unique requirements. 

“Monika Liikamaa, Enfuce’s Co-Founder and Co-CEO, was one of the first people I spoke to when I first had the idea for the company. Monika’s deep expertise in payments, and Enfuce’s stellar reputation in empowering clients with CaaS and digital wallet capabilities meant they were my first choice of partner.”
Pasi Ilola, Founder and CEO, Starcart

“At Visa, we support innovative fintech companies that can create social added value in their own markets. I believe that Starcart’s innovative payment solution, which has potential to significantly streamline the e-shopping experience by saving customers time and effort in searching for products and comparing prices, falls into this category.”
Juha Sillanpää, Country Manager for Finland and the Baltics, Visa

How does it work? When a customer checks out their shopping cart, they can pay Starcart by card, BNPL invoice, or in instalments. Embedded onto the platform, a virtual disposable Visa prepaid card is instantly issued to Starcart by Enfuce. Starcart’s sophisticated automation—already used to confirm the prices and shipping fees of products in the shopping cart—pays for the products using Starcart’s virtual card. It’s all done in one click and takes just seconds. The issued cards are managed securely to prevent any possibilities for misuse or fraud.

Starcart launched in the spring of 2022. From start to finish, it took just a year to turn an idea into a powerful new proposition and an industry first. 

Results: Explosive traction and more than 30% sales growth month-on-month 

Starcart’s combination of low prices and convenience has been a great help to consumers amid soaring mortgage rates and inflationary pressures. As of March 2023—less than a year after launch—Starcart was serving tens of thousands of customers, with growth in sales volume exceeding 30% per month. That’s all the more impressive given that e-commerce is a cyclical business, with volumes tending to drop after holiday and peak sales seasons. 

Feedback on the customer experience has also been overwhelmingly positive, with an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5, based on reviews prompted after every purchase.

Retailers, meanwhile, are benefitting from sales they weren’t even expecting, from customers they might never have been able to reach. That’s especially welcome for small-and-medium-sized sellers, who can now compete on a level playing field against big brand names.

None of this would have been possible without the speed, security and convenience of Enfuce’s virtual card payments solution. Together, Starcart’s innovative business model and Enfuce’s embedded payments expertise are transforming the way consumers shop online. And it’s not going to stop there: as Starcart eyes expansion across Europe, Enfuce will be with it every step of the way. 

“Enfuce have solved all the technical and legal challenges we were faced with as a completely new kind of business. It’s been amazing to see how quickly they’ve enabled us to get up and running with card payments and to see how our service is meeting a real need in the market. Enfuce’s capabilities have enabled us to enjoy consistent growth and offer our customers even more choice and convenience.”
Pasi Ilola, Founder and CEO, Starcart

“Payment often is the least fun part of online shopping, but together we are making it as slick and as smooth as possible. Our partnership with Starcart is a fantastic example of how Enfuce does the heavy lifting of card issuing and processing, empowering businesses to focus on their core operations with the reassurance of a trusted compliant partner helping them in their quests to drive growth and customer loyalty.”
Denise Johansson, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Enfuce

*Visa is a registered trademark of Visa International Service Association.

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